Flood Warnings & Safety
Flood Warning System
The National Weather Service has developed a flood warning system for areas in the Reedy River and Richland Creek floodplains. The flood warning system is intended to provide up to a two-hour advanced warning of a flood hazard.
Warnings will be disseminated by local radio stations, including WFBC, WESC and WSSL. The National Weather Service also issues official weather bulletins to local and regional television stations, including WYFF and FOX Carolina. When an evacuation is ordered, local television and radio stations will broadcast the order.
Watch vs. Warning
A flash flood watch means flash flooding is possible within the watch area. A flash flood warning means flash flooding is imminent or has been reported in the warning area.
During a flood, gas, water and power lines can be ruptured. Before leaving your property, turn off electric circuits and shut off gas and water valves. These simple steps can prevent additional losses due to fire, and the following actions can help mitigate the flood hazard during heavy rainfall:
- Monitor the level of water in streams and stay tuned to the radio or television for possible flood watches or warnings.
- Evacuate the flood hazard area in times of impending flood or when advised to do so by the police or fire department.
- Do not walk through flowing water. Drowning is the number one cause of flood deaths. Currents can be deceptive; six inches of moving water can knock you off your feet. If you walk in standing water, use a pole or stick to ensure that the ground is still there.
- Do not drive through a flooded area. More people drown in their cars than anywhere else. Do not drive around road barriers, as the road or bridge may be washed out. Remember: Turn Around Don't Drown.
- Stay away from power lines and electrical wires. Electrical current can travel through water and the second leading cause of flood deaths is electrocution. Report downed power lines to Duke Power at 1-800-769-3766.
- Be alert for gas leaks. Use a flashlight to inspect for damage. Don't smoke or use candles, lanterns or open flames unless you know the gas has been turned off and the area has been ventilated.
- Look out for animals, especially snakes. Small animals that have been flooded out of their homes may seek shelter in your home. Use a pole or stick to poke and turn things over and scare away small animals.
- Keep children away from flood waters, ditches, culverts and storm drains, and be especially cautious at night.